ELKINS – Davis & Elkins College alumnus Dr. Nico P. Pronk, ’86, will deliver a public lecture titled “The Role of Business in Community Health and Well-Being” at 9 a.m. Friday, October 12 in The McDonnell Center as part of Homecoming, Senator Nation and Family Weekend. Pronk is the president and senior research investigator at HealthPartners Institute and the founder and past-president of the International Association for Worksite Health Promotion.
“D&E’s new community and corporate health major is of special interest to Dr. Pronk as he has supported the field in research and education,” said Dr. Mary Ann DeLuca, who holds the Dr. Jean A. Minnick Chair in Sport Science. “We are very happy to have him return to campus and share his insight.”
Recently, Pronk engaged the D&E Sport Science Department faculty and students to accept membership into the International Association for Worksite Health Promotion, an Affiliate Society to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) that focuses on the advancement of the global community of worksite health promotion practitioners through high-quality information, services, educational activities, personal and professional development and networking opportunities.
In addition to his work with HealthPartners Institute, Pronk is an adjunct professor at Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health where he instructs a course on work, health and well-being, and has served as a visiting research professor in environmental health sciences at the University of Minnesota.
HealthPartners Institute, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, conducts hundreds of research studies each year to advance treatment, care and systems to improve lives and share findings across the world. Through their education programs, the organization supports learning across many platforms and communities including graduate medication education and clinician and patient education.
In his role with HealthPartners Institute, Pronk leads all research, health professional education and patient education. His work with the organization has included directing the Center for Health Promotion at HealthPartners, leading the development of the HealthPartners Disease Management program, and leading the creation of a new national product line for health and wellness services.
Pronk has provided professional service to numerous national and international health organizations including the National Center for the American Heart Association, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Institute of Medicine and the World Health Organization, among others. Following an appointment by the White House, Pronk is currently co-chair of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Advisory Committee on National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2030.
Pronk is the author of the textbook “ACSM’s Worksite Health Handbook, Second Edition,” and along with T.B. Gorman, is the co-author of the textbook “Soccer Everyone.” He also has written more than 20 book chapters and scores of columns and commentaries for health journals.
As a Davis & Elkins College student, Pronk was the 1985 Academic Athlete of the Year and was an Academic All-American in 1986. He was a member of the Senators soccer team from 1982-86.
In addition to a Bachelor of Science degree in health and physical education from D&E, Pronk holds an associate degree in language arts, Russian from Verenigd Particulier Onderwija Amsterdam, a Master of Arts degree in exercise physiology from Kearney State College and a Ph.D. in exercise physiology from Texas A&M University. In addition, he completed a two-year senior research fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic.
Related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Davis & Elkins College is located in Elkins, 2 hours east of Charleston, 3 hours south of Pittsburgh and 4 hours west of Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit the College website at www.dewv.edu or call 304-637-1243.